I contacted Phraydoe Peans two days after The Family Gang’s “Secret”performance at The Space because I’m always intrigued by how bands begin and interested in learning individual stories behind their history. Several facebook messages led to a phone call. Thirty minutes later, a few laughs, and some serious personal talk, I had a very interesting and diverse story to pen.
Peans first started out building a street team for his friend and mentor named Revenue Hefner while living in Las Vegas. “Rev was a colorful character in my life” Peans mentions. “He inspired me to come out of my MC closet and gave me the confidence to really explore the word of MCing.” Peans worked with Rev for 5 years, helping build and grow a street team for Rev’s music in Vegas.
After Revenue Hefners untimely and tragic death in Vegas, Peans moved to Orlando to regain his footing and reorganize his life. The hidden track on The Family Gang album is also sort of a tribute to the late Revenue Hefner. The expanded title is “Celebrate Your Life Until You Die. Because eventually we all die” Peans recalls.
After settling in Orlando, Peans began hosting a Monday night club night variety show at Club 57 West with his new acquaintances, Dizzle Phunk and Rebel Black, which included musicians, magicians, comedians, artists, and more. This weekly event was called Soul of Da City hence the name of his promotion company, Soul Of Da City Entertainment.
As Dizzle and Peans became closer and the Monday show night became more and more successful, the two yearned to create something bigger. That bigger thing was the beginning of The Family Gang.
“We got a gig at Plaza [Live] and needed a name for the flyer. I had the name Family Gang in the back of my head for years and presented it to the band before the first gig.” Peans recalls. The band decided it was an appropriate title for the journey they were about to embark on. The band is now called The Family Gang due to internet search engine friendliness and the availability of their URL.
Peans explains that he was always inspired by Rage Against The Machine. “Zach [De La Rocha] was an influence in his poetic lyrics,” Peans mentions, while further explaining how Tom [Morello]’s creative craftsmanship on the guitar encouraged him to begin learning the bass. “I’ve always made beats, that’s half the rhythm section, why not learn the bass too” Peans said he thought.
Like mentioned previously, to be a movement leader you must have complete dedication to what you’re doing and believe in yourself. “This is all for the end goal to give life to what I do as an artist.” Peans passionately describes.
He believes in building a community and being supportive of one another. He believes in creating a family-like atmosphere within his projects. “Maybe some people in our circles don’t have families. We want to be support for those and for others.” Peans empathetically states.
In addition to The Family Gang and Soul of Da City Entertainment, Peans recently had a soft opening for his new art gallery in the Fashion Square mall called The Cultural Xchange.
“This is art at it’s core.” Peans beings. “It’s an ‘Artist Social Club’ in a sense. A place where artists can display and sell their art, get content, and network with the arts community in Orlando.” Musicians and other branches of the arts community are always welcome. There’s free wifi for everyone who visits and they claim to regularly have musical performances and art shows for the community.
I learned the next big event at The Cultural Xchange is on Saturday, October 11, 2014 which will be their official “Grand Opening” celebration. The Cultural Xchange is currently open limited hours but plan on a seven day a week schedule after the grand opening. The current hours are Thursday – Sunday, 9am to at least 9pm (typically later on Friday and Saturday nights).
Be sure to check out their Votelando as well on October 25 with over 70 Acts! Here’s the Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1450036998596565/
It’s become clear to me that the reason why people actually give-a-shit about what he’s doing is because Peans is determined as fuck and genuinely cares about what he’s doing, what he’s building, where he’s going, and who he’s bringing with him.
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